A man in the United Kingdom has sought advice for an unusual predicament: though married to a woman, he can’t stop hooking up with other men.
“Even though I’m happily married to my wife, I crave gay sex with guys I meet online,” the man writes to popular UK advice columnist Dear Deidre. “I was sexually abused as a child by two men. My grandfather assaulted me from when I was nine until I was 13. It only stopped when he died.”
“When I was 15 a neighbor paid me to do some odd jobs for him,” he continues. “One day he asked if I’d like to earn a bit more by letting him give me oral sex. I agreed and it led to a full sexual relationship, which I enjoyed.”
“At 20, I fell in love with the woman who became my wife,” the man explains. “I’m now 50 and our relationship is good, I love her very much. So why can’t I stop meeting men on gay sex sites and secretly hooking up with them? I know my marriage would be over if my wife found out.”
Recognizing the man’s trauma, Deidre offers her usual sound advice.
“The abuse that you suffered has had a big impact on your sexuality,” she notes. “It doesn’t sound like you have had any help to deal with it, which is now threatening to destroy your loving relationship. Please read my support pack Abused As A Child? and contact NAPAC (napac.org.uk), a charity supporting adult survivors of sexual abuse.”
Psychologists and experts in sexual health note that there is no link between surviving sexual abuse and identifying as queer.
A 2010 study released by the Center for Disease Control found that at least 40% of LGBTQ-identifying men will experience some form of sexual abuse or violence in their lifetimes, almost double the rate of their heterosexual counterparts.